As the Marvel juggernaut continues to speed ahead, dispensing a huge array of films and series featuring multifarious characters and an increasing selection of superhuman protagonists, it is no surprise that the comic book giant has announced that Doctor Strange will make his cinema debut in a recently announced eponymous film. The Doctor’s role in the comic books is that of the Sorcerer Supreme- Earth’s protector against threats that are magical and fantastical rather than the orchestrated destruction of standard comic book villains. He has already been the subject of a low budget direct-to-TV film as well as a TV series, but with Marvel Studios financing the project we can be sure that Doctor Strange will be a superhero movie of epic proportions- a visual spectacle certain to be a feast of CGI. However, other facts hint that the film will take on a darker turn than the likes of The Avengers or Iron Man.

Derrickson At Sinister ScreeningDerrickson has made a name for himself as a horror director able to work on small budgets.

But who will take the helm as director of such an imposing project? That accolade has been bestowed upon Scott Derrickson, who will reportedly work alongside producer Kevin Feige- the man responsible for the production of many of Marvel’s blockbuster leviathans, including each of the X-Men, Iron Man and Avengers instalments. Derrickson has been slowly making a name for himself throughout Hollywood as a much respected horror director and his film The Exorcism Of Emily Rose grossed $144 million at the box-office, a hugely respectable figure for a low-budget horror pic.

He suffered a misstep in the guise of the Keanu Reeves vehicle The Day The Earth Stood Still, an ill-conceived remake of the 1950’s sci-fi classic. But Derrickson got back on the right track with Sinister, starring Ethan Hawke, which performed very well amongst audiences and critics alike despite its modest budget. However, it is yet to be seen how well Derrickson will perform with a budget as surely extensive as that which will provided for Doctor Strange.

More: Will Marvel's Doctor Strange Posit A Darker Turn For The Superhero Film?

Yet, with guidance from producer Kevin Feige, Doctor Strange will surely be a success, although due to the lack of awareness of the character amongst the mainstream cinema-going public, it is doubtful whether the film will gain a level of appeal which helped Iron Man and The Avengers to billion-dollar grossing success stories. But given Derrickson’s penchant for the occult, the mysterious and the eerie, Doctor Strange could usher in a fresh take on the superhero film, one that relies more on psychological means to engage audiences rather than a continuous barrage of special effects.

As such, there will be plenty of intrigue surrounding the picture as a possible site of revamp for the superhero zeitgeist, a platform for innovation that only a young director of Derrickson’s calibre can provide.